A Lesson in Geography… • Many crescent moons ago, there was a group of tribes called Hittites which settled in a fertile land separating the Black and Mediterranean Sea…
Little did these people know that they were living in a place called Anatolia- a bridge between what would become Europe and Asia.
In this land there grew a political capital, Ankara and a cultural capital, Istanbul. • Though the laws are made in Ankara, the mix of cultures in Istanbul is where Europe and Asia divide, and where laws are practiced or broken by the masses.
The Beginning of Turkish Liberalism • Mustafa Kemal “Ataturk”, the father of Turkish nationalism and liberalism.
Turkish Democratic System • Since 1923, the government of Turkey has been based on a republican representative democratic system.
Who Leads Turkey? • Since 2005, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been prime minister and Abdullah Gul has been president. Recep Tayyip Erdogan Abdullah Gul
Is Turkey a One-Party State? • Turkey is not a one-party state, it has a multitude of parties • Each party must reach a threshold of 10% of the national support.
Is the government periodically elected? • The president is elected under 5 year terms • The prime minister is appointed by parliament about every 4 years.
Are minorities protected? • Under the Lausanne Peace Treaty the 3 recognized minorities in Turkey are Jewish peoples, Armenian Christians, and Orthodox Christians.
Is the Judicial System free and fair? • The Constitutional Court has overruled government legislation as late as 2008.
Is there censorship of the press? • There is widespread censorship especially concerning the issue of Kurds in Turkey and their fight for self-determination.
Article: FareedZakaria GPS (2012) from CNN • The decade-long rule by the AKP Party has allowed overconfidence. • There is less press freedom, less minority concern, and more polarization between right wing conservatives and left wing liberals.
Personal Ranking of Turkish Liberalism 8 • Stable government with representative democracy • Stable economy (less threat of ultranationalist or radical Islamists performing a coup d’etat) • Relatively Western views without creation of puppet government • However, little minority protection • Widespread use of bribes
Bibliography • http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0108054.html?pageno=10 • http://countrystudies.us/turkey/70.htm • http://www.freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-world/2009/turkey • http://www.mfa.gov.tr/mustafa-kemal-ataturk.en.mfa • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politics_of_Turkey • http://pjmedia.com/barryrubin/2011/06/14/turkish-election-voter-fraud/ • www.nytimes.com/2008/09/08/opinion/08iht-edgage.1.15977058.html • http://www.indexoncensorship.org/2012/01/turkey-press-freedom-ece-temelkuran/ • http://globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn.com/2012/12/28/turkey-in-2013-will-erdogan-shake-up-the-region/
Turkey “Peace in the homeland, peace in the world.”